One of the guests at Thursday's media/members preview of Cincinnati Art Museum's Terracotta Army: Legacy of the First Emperor of China exhibit — which opens to the public today and is up through Aug. 12 — was China Daily reporter Zhang Ruinan, who is from Beijing but based out of New York.
She was here because the newspaper has just published her story about the exhibit. It turns out China is concerned because, at an exhibit of such warriors at Philadelphia's Franklin Institute in December, a man broke a finger off of one the priceless life-size statues to take as a souvenir. As a result, China requested increased security here, and the art museum has complied.
In the article, CAM director Cameron Kitchin says, "We have worked closely with Chinese cultural officials to assure the security of these artifacts. We also as an art museum have a very high standard for security and respect for objects on loan to the museum."
Qi Gaoquan, deputy director of the Bureau of Cultural Relics of China's Shaanxi province, traveled here for an inspection before the exhibition opens and told the newspaper, "After what happened in Philadelphia, the Cincinnati Art Museum and our staff have reached an agreement to take active actions in improving our security protocol and procedures to ensure the safety of our artifacts. All the actions we took this time are based on the lessons we drew from the incident that happened in Philadelphia. We've taken the strictest security measures to ensure a similar incident will never happen again."
The art museum says the thumb that was taken was returned when the FBI arrested the man in Philadelphia and the warrior will be repaired. But it is not one of the warriors at the art museum here — this exhibition is substantially different.
Read the China Daily story here